WHO'S WHO: Children's author HELEN BAILEY
Helen Bailey is a young people s author whose latest creation is Electra Brown, a sassy teen whose trials and tribulations form the basis for a series of novels for girls. She lives in Bishopswood Road, Highgate. HOW LONG HAVE YOU LIVED IN HIGHGATE?
Helen Bailey is a young people's author whose latest creation is Electra Brown, a sassy teen whose trials and tribulations form the basis for a series of novels for girls. She lives in Bishopswood Road, Highgate.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU LIVED IN HIGHGATE?
For 12 years, after living in Clerkenwell for eight years. The moment my husband and I left, the area became desirable. I like to pretend I was a pre-trendsetter!
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO LIVE IN HIGHGATE?
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It was a totally canine-influenced. Our dachshund Rufus loved the Heath, Highgate Woods and Waterlow Park, so we were always coming up the hill to let him roll around in smelly things. I loved Clerkenwell, but Exmouth Market's not exactly dog-friendly.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT THE AREA?
- 1 'Family unit': 28 Church Row wins readers' favourite restaurant
- 2 Haringey Green Lanes flat fire sees 40 firefighters tackle blaze
- 3 O2 Centre redevelopment: Decision draws on Camden planning guidance
- 4 Crouch End salesman who nursed mum runs marathon for Diabetes UK
- 5 Explore 8 of north London's prettiest streets
- 6 'Lobster-like creature' pulled from Hampstead Heath ladies' pond
- 7 For sale: Suggs' former 'bachelor pad' with gold-gilded underground bar
- 8 Anger as second audit into £23m 'Mary Celeste' office block is delayed
- 9 Met Office issues yellow warning for heavy showers in London
- 10 Free festival to take over the streets of Camden
It's leafy and lovely but close to the West End.
What is the worst thing?
It's only quick to get home from the West End if you take a cab or drive. I'm pro public transport, but I'm not keen on hanging around Archway at night in my party frock and heels to change buses.
what is missing?
Other than a direct bus, I have a hankering for a really good fish and chip shop, one where you could eat in as well as take-away.
WhICH ARE your favourite shops in HIGHGATE? ?
Walter Castellazzo Design for great gifts and a chat with Avril. Dragonfly Wholefoods and Juice Bar is an excellent addition and the Highgate Bookshop is great for browsing and buying.
WHICH LOCAL RESTAURANT OR PUB IS YOUR FAVOURITE?
The Red Lion and Sun on North Hill is a really welcoming pub with great food, friendly staff and a gorgeous puppy, Silvester.
WHAT DO YOU DO IN THE AREA AT WEEKENDS?
If I'm working on a novel I'm usually slaving over a hot laptop. If not, it tends to be along the lines of: potter around Waterlow Park, feel inspired, go to Highgate Garden Centre, buy plants, attack the garden, collapse, go to The Red Lion and Sun to discuss how long it will be before the slugs eat the plants.
IF YOU WERE MAYOR FOR A DAY, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
I'd take that day's revenue from the congestion charge, parking meters and parking/traffic fines and give it to London's Air Ambulance. It's an amazing service, totally reliant on donations.
WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING AT THE MOMENT?
Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss. I'm trying to improve my punctuation and make my editor's life easier.
IF YOU HAD A MILLION POUNDS TO SPEND IN A DAY WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
Buy a fab handbag and give the rest to North London Hospice.
WHAT WOULD YOUR EPITAPH BE?
I collect unusual death notices from newspapers. I once saw one referring to an elderly gentleman which read: Tired, fed up and ready to go. If I live to 100 and all my friends have gone before me, that would do nicely.